The way of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but he loves him that follows after righteousness.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Genesis 48:18; Exodus 10:11; Numbers 12:7.
way … followeth … righteousness—denote conduct. God's regard for the worship and deeds of the righteous and wicked respectively, so stated in Ps 50:17; Isa 1:11.The way; the conversation or course of life. This verse seems to contain a reason of the foregoing. God hates wicked men’s religious performances, because they are accompanied with ungodly lives, and they pull down with one hand what they build up with another.
That followeth after righteousness; that earnestly desires, and constantly and diligently endeavours, to be holy and righteous in the course of his life, although he doth not attain to that perfect righteousness which he thirsts after.
but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness; either after a justifying righteousness; not the righteousness of the law, which the carnal Jews followed after, but did not attain unto; nor is righteousness to be had by the works of the law, nor any justification by it, nor can a man be acceptable to God on account of it; but the righteousness of Christ, which he has wrought out, and is revealed in the Gospel: to follow after this supposes a want of one; a sense of that want; a view of the glory, fulness, suitableness, and excellency of Christ's righteousness; an eager desire after it, sometimes expressed by hungering and thirsting after it, as here by a pursuit of it; which means no other than an earnest and importunate request to be found in it: and such, as they shall be satisfied or filled with it, so they are loved by the Lord, and are acceptable to him through the righteousness they are seeking after: or else it may be understood of following after true holiness of heart and life, without which there is no seeing the Lord; and though perfection in it is not attainable in this live, yet a gracious soul presses after it, which is well pleasing in the sight of God.The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the LORD: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verse 9. - This verse gives the reason for the treatment specified in the preceding verse (comp. Proverbs 11:20; Proverbs 12:22). Followeth after; chaseth, implying effort and perseverance, as in the pursuit of game (Proverbs 11:19; Proverbs 21:21).
Observing the evil and the good.
The connection of the dual עינים with the plur. of the adjective, which does not admit of a dual, is like Proverbs 6:17, cf. 18. But the first line is a sentence by itself, to which the second line gives a closer determination, as showing how the eyes of God are everywhere (cf. 2 Chronicles 16:9, after Zechariah 4:10) abroad over the whole earth, viz., beholding with penetrating look the evil and the good (צפה, to hold to, to observe, cf. ἐπιβλέποντες, Sir. 23:19), i.e., examining men whether they are good or evil, and keeping them closely before His eyes, so that nothing escapes him. This universal inspection, this omniscience of God, has an alarming but also a comforting side. The proverb seeks first to warn, therefore it speaks first of the evil.
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